February 19th, 2009
06:00 PM ET
5 years ago

Meghan McCain tells GOP to get tech savvy

 Meghan McCain says its time the GOP embraces technology.
Meghan McCain says its time the GOP embraces technology.

(CNN) - The Republican Party needs to change - at least when it comes to its use of technology, Meghan McCain says.

In a column on the Daily Beast Web site, the daughter of Sen. John McCain says the GOP is likely to continue its decline in power unless members vastly improve their tech fluency.

"This has been a source of personal frustration for me for a very long time," said McCain of the party's seeming disconnect with technology. "Unless the GOP evolves as the party that can successfully utilize the Web, we'll continue to lose influence"

McCain, who authored a popular blog on her father's Web site while he was running for president, also recounts early pushback from Republican strategists when she first sought to establish the Web site.

"Many of the established Republican strategists told me that young people would not visit my web site," she wrote. "I used to categorize many of the advisors in my father's campaign into one of two groups: those that 'respected' the Internet and those who didn't. It was a running line between me and my friends who worked on my site."

McCain also suggested the party's lack of online savvy greatly contributed to her father's defeat last November.

"The Obama administration understands that my generation spends most of its day on a laptop or a BlackBerry, and that using the Web is easy way to communicate their ideas to their constituents," she said. "Until the Republican Party joins the twenty-first century and learns how to use the Internet, its members will keep getting older and the youth of America will just keep logging on to the other side."

Several Republicans appear to have gotten the message. According to TweetCongress.org, more Republicans are now on the popular social networking site Twitter than are Democrats. And the recent election for the Republican Party Chairman heavily revolved around who was best positioned to modernize the party's use of technology.


Filed under: Extra • Meghan McCain
soundoff (393 Responses)
  1. Ryan Turner

    The only place for blame on our current state of affairs is back on ourselves. We continue to elect people on party lines and not their true platform which means conditions aren't going to change in the political climate.Congress was at 19% approval rating in the past year.There are plenty of independent parties that run for election each year on a better platform who aren't even getting a shot. Stop blaming the left or right on the way things are, and vote for people by their character and common sense.

    February 19, 2009 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  2. basbille

    why is anyone listening to her anyway? puzzling ... but at least "more repubs are on twitter than demos "... that outta help in laying the proper foundations! ... FYI "bob's on his way to his liberal bed." lol

    February 19, 2009 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  3. Linda

    We can only thank Heaven that Al Gore invented the internet!!!

    February 19, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  4. Greg Hodges

    Funny that this young lady figured out what the brilliant leaders of the G.O.P. could not. Perhaps the Republicans might yet join the 21st Century. Then again...

    February 19, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  5. suzyku

    The GOP will likely decline in power because they are stupid! They have outdated ideologies, they are nasty,, they have no good idea's let alone any ideas that matter at all! It's not just getting tech savvy, it's the message that counts and they're message is wrong for this country. They think by electing a black man to head up the RNC it will somehow attract more minorities, it's not the color of someone's skin, it's what he or she has to say and Steele is as nasty a piece of work as they get! Another clueless move, they should just disband, the country would be better off without them!

    February 19, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  6. Josh

    Someone needs to tell this woman that lack of technological knowhow is the least of the Republicans' worries and most certainly NOT the reason that they will remain the minority party for a long time to come. The suggestion that all the Republican message needs in order to be attractive to young people is to "go digital " is insulting to our nation's young people. Then again, considering the source, I'm not surprised.

    February 19, 2009 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  7. rbb

    How can you belong to the 21st century and be a Republican. That is an oximoron.

    February 19, 2009 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  8. BK

    Wise statements from the young McCain, but they are unlikely to be heeded as well as they could be. Republicans by nature do not embrace new technology and that will increasingly cost them. The only way for Republicans to stay a driving force in America is to change the very ideals that define them. The outdated, dark age mentality that makes them Republican.

    February 19, 2009 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  9. That's not the problem

    This girl is dreaming. GOP members and supporters can and do use the computer just fine.It is the intolerant,backwards looking people and the views they express like Palin and Limbaugh who are killing us.

    February 19, 2009 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  10. Put an End to the Republican Reign Over the US

    Honey, techno-fluency isn't the GOP's problem. It's their attitude and the hypocricies they are showing the American Citizens.

    This holier than thou attitude will get them nowhere.

    February 19, 2009 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  11. wakeupamerica

    Tech savvy only helps if you have intelligent people running a campaign and running for office. McCain / Palin's message spoke for itself and then America spoke for the country.

    February 19, 2009 10:14 pm at 10:14 pm |
  12. myke

    yea... the internet....
    that's why the republicans lost.

    anything to sleep at night I suppose.

    February 19, 2009 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  13. Enough

    These repugs need to lbe in touch with the real world world not the good ole white boy world. They need to get rid of all those ole white men however; that is part of their problem the younger generation does not agree with this ole repug. party. Learning ANY new technology is the least of their problems.

    February 19, 2009 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  14. jean

    This dumb blonde just wants to be seen and heard. The Republicans Party needs to die. They are the party of hatered. There is no longer any space in the world for hate groups such as the Republicans.

    February 19, 2009 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  15. get real dude

    oh well...

    February 19, 2009 10:23 pm at 10:23 pm |
  16. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    In other words, Meghan, you're telling your party to pander, falsely, to people in order to fix the Bush damage that was done.

    Too late. Where were you during the period Americans were subjected to Push-A-Palin?!

    Or, do you plan to use the technology in order to obstruct governmental progress to a new level and degree?!

    February 19, 2009 10:25 pm at 10:25 pm |
  17. ron

    I agree with her wholeheartedly , because when I tried to make a donation to McCain's campaign, I could not reach anyone after 5 eastern . I could not believe they did not even have a message recorder to take my info or get back to me. Who ever heard of not having someone taking donations thru the evening out west ? No RECORDER ??? I then tried to thru the website and it was a total joke as well. I left my cell # and e-mail info and waited several days – NADA ! So to give them $ 500 in desperation I called before 5 eastern and got a luke warm body who took it and when I asked about at least a phone machine to get the calls after 5 she blew me off ! I think they had to be gov. drones to run it like that. McCain earned that loss. I would not like his way of running the gov. anyway if its like his campaign.

    February 19, 2009 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  18. jr

    I think that is small part of it...but not ALL of it...I think the Republican party is just "out of touch" with the American people...They can get as computer savvy as they want...but until they "truly" understand the needs of the average American...they will not gain many new constituents... I do think that this is thinking outside of the box...it's a start..but they have a VERY LONG WAY to go.

    February 19, 2009 10:31 pm at 10:31 pm |
  19. Richie

    It is not that not using technology makes the repubs old, it is that being old makes them not use technology. Get a grip, girlfriend.

    February 19, 2009 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  20. Otto

    Someone said the Republicans will be back in power 2010/2012.

    I call that careless whisper! I give them at least 20 years in the wilderness; if they are lucky.

    February 19, 2009 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  21. james

    How about the GOP stop trying to turn the people of this country against each other and stop being Hippocrates . Why can they NOW show decent against the president doesn't that make them un American , haters of democracy , LIBERALS ? I guess I just imagined the last 8 years huh?

    February 19, 2009 10:33 pm at 10:33 pm |
  22. Andrew

    You'd think she'd teach her father how to use a computer before scolding the entire GOP...

    February 19, 2009 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  23. JonPeter Hartford, CT

    The Republican party needs to move to the center and attract more moderate votes who swung the last election. Time to kick the mean spirited Rush Limbaugh apologists to the curb and tell the christian right to tone things down a notch. John McCain had my vote until he sold his principles to the right wing for the nomination.

    Give me a Pawlenty, a Ridge, even a Pataki after years of far right ideological dimbulbery. If 6-8 modrate thinkers can form an alliance and lick the strident right to the curb, the republicans have a chance. otherwise, 2010 is going to be a repeat of 2008.

    February 19, 2009 10:34 pm at 10:34 pm |
  24. Randall Arnold

    If the GOP changed enough to be tech savvy, they would no longer be the same sort of party. Progressive Conservatives? LOL!

    February 19, 2009 10:35 pm at 10:35 pm |
  25. USANUM1

    And add CNN to that main media comment....they only tell you part of the story too. And sometimes, a totally different story than the truth! I've seen it, that's why I remain an independent. That way, neither side can tell me how to think...you should try the same.

    February 19, 2009 10:41 pm at 10:41 pm |
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